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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If you would humor me with your thoughts, I would appreciate it. These are some of my mental ramblings that I would like feedback on.

I've been thinking a lot lately about confidence. Self confidence to be exact. Since the time I was a little boy, I remember having issues of confidence. I believe my mindset in life as I approach situations has always been a combination of pessimism and realism. So, for a given situation, what are my options? What are the likely outcomes? Usually, I believe the likely outcomes are unfavorable outcomes, and often they seem to be so.

I wonder is this like the chicken or the egg? Does confidence breed success and low confidence breed failure or stagnation? Here I am defining success as the outcome you wanted and failure as the undesireable outcome. Does this really happen? Is this really how it works? Sometimes I wonder.

Come to think of it, I think I know what's going on here ( just had a thought as I am typing this). It's my F vs my weak but developing T. For certain topics (job, school) I think I make a lot of decisions based on T (which I think I have just learned through school and the people I am around). What makes the most sense? What is the smart play here? What should I, realistically, expect?

But here's where F comes in for me, I think. I think there are events that I dont even remember very well that negatively shaped my expectations about things in life (relationships, success, etc.). My feelings of low confidence/self esteem are very strong in specific situations (learning this as I get older). It's like a reflex now, and I am left afterward with wondering why I did or did not do something just then. So, what of this?

I think while the memory may be a bit vague for these things, my feelings are not. They are burned in, and I seem to act accordingly. I did this today, which is probably why I wrote this.

Thank you for reading if you have, would love to hear some of your thoughts.

J :dry:
 

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I've been thinking a lot lately about confidence. Self confidence to be exact. Since the time I was a little boy, I remember having issues of confidence. I believe my mindset in life as I approach situations has always been a combination of pessimism and realism.
I just have one tiny thing to add, and then I'm going to bed.

Don't confuse realism with pessimism. Many pessimists think of themselves as realists.

Optimism is not always unrealistic.
 

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I think that very few people are born with confidence. It is a skill you have to develop like anything else. If you don't feel confident in a situation, then just acting confident will increase your actual confidence, if you see what I mean, and eventually it becomes second nature - but yeah, especially for us feelers, something can happen that can quite easily knock us for six, and it will frustrate us because we won't know exactly what event caused the emotional response that results in lack of self-confidence.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks, those are both very good points. I will think about that. I think I have tried feeling confident before in certain situations. But what usually happens is I know this and so I feel fake. I hate being fake. So I will usually stop this and act on the way I am really feeling.
 

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Sorry to post such a short comment:

Have you considered how your self-confidence relates to your self-image? Do you need to be confident in every situation to have a positive self-image? Why do you judge yourself on your performance? Do you think you could have a positive self-image without feeling self-confident?

You sound a lot like me...
 
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I think that sometimes we can try to over analyze our confidence levels to the point that we can't do anything that requires and unusual degree of self-confidence. There are times it is better to just act rather than question our abilities.
 

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Based on the only INFJ I know well, that does seem to be the case. He doesn't really believe in himself, and as a result, he doesn't do well in whatever he wants to do. It's a self defeating attitude, and the only thing holding him back is confidence. So think of it this way. If you're not confident, you will stay that way. It's a death spiral, I know.

Start with a little narcissism. Playfully narcissistic. Your friends might find it funny, but sooner or later, you realize some of it's true. I started out with faux-narcissism as a joke, but then it actually increased my self confidence. Not that I'm narcissistic, but it does help. It's really positive.
 

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I think I have tried feeling confident before in certain situations. But what usually happens is I know this and so I feel fake. I hate being fake. So I will usually stop this and act on the way I am really feeling.
But the thing to remember is that in order to feel it, pretty much everyone has to fake it at first. You don't have to fake confidence in every situation, it's OK to be vulnerable, but in the parts of life where you really feel that a lack of confidence is holding you back from attaining your true potential, from being the person who you know yourself to be, you owe it to yourself and the world to bluff it, just for a short while, until you feel more comfortable with the situation. If it turns out you have to keep faking it in the same situations over a long period, then perhaps you're mistaken about them being the best situations for you to be in.

Obviously, I'm talking about situations that you choose to be in. Situations that are forced upon you, by work or what have you, are a different matter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I guess my worry is: How long (for certain problem situations) is this going to take? I have a bad feeling for certain things (ex. I hate attending weddings, way too many people I don't want to talk to). I have a family member who is single and decades older than me and I dont know if he ever really got over it, I think he more just stopped thinking about it or trying.

The best example I can give of trying this was about 6 months ago, when I asked a girl out on a plane. My friend dared me to do it, before we got on the plane. He said "dude, fake it till you make it". Haha, anyway: Probably the 5th girl I've ever asked out to anything in my life. On a plane! I didn't even know her. While I was asking I kept thinking "you are going to regret this". She gave me a number (the wrong one) and when I called it some old guy answered saying something like "no I don't want what you are selling". It was funny, that part, I admit. But other than that I felt like an idiot afterwards. I definitely will not do that again, ever.
Maybe I am just F**'d in the head and need to talk to a shrink :tongue:

To the person who said they could relate, haha, thanks! I don't hear that often in the outside world..

"Have you considered how your self-confidence relates to your self-image? Do you need to be confident in every situation to have a positive self-image? Why do you judge yourself on your performance? Do you think you could have a positive self-image without feeling self-confident?"

Personally, I think I need at least some self confidence in order to have a positive self image. Aren't they related? Isn't self confidence the belief that one "has what it takes", so to speak? As far as performance, I have always judged myself on performance, on outcomes too. Maybe unrealistically so at times, I don't really know. So are you asking, do I think I could feel good about myself, without believing I "have what it takes" (aka self confidence)? I guess it's possible, but I don't think it is for me. I dunno. =/
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Actually, it is possible, I think.

I think it is possible to have a positive self image, to see the good in yourself and have little to no confidence for things that are not important to you. So if confidence is defined as how strong your belief is in yourself in your ability to do something, well if you don't really care about that something that you are doing, then your confidence in this is separate from your self image, right? I think it is possible, in this way. Because for this case you can continue to feel good about yourself even though you have no confidence regarding lets say big social events. Why? Because you don't care about the outcomes of the social event, so you act how you act and you don't care.

Or am I just going insane?:confused:

I think I've just tied in performance/outcomes and my perception of them to how I feel about myself again. But, personally, it's hard for me not to do that.
 

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To the person who said they could relate, haha, thanks! I don't hear that often in the outside world..
You're welcome... :laughing:

Actually, it is possible, I think.
Now I like how I can see how that idea landed in your mind during the 7 mins between your post. Thanks for the honesty to not simply edit away the first post. :happy:

I think it is possible to have a positive self image, to see the good in yourself and have little to no confidence for things that are not important to you. So if confidence is defined as how strong your belief is in yourself in your ability to do something, well if you don't really care about that something that you are doing, then your confidence in this is separate from your self image, right? I think it is possible, in this way. Because for this case you can continue to feel good about yourself even though you have no confidence regarding lets say big social events. Why? Because you don't care about the outcomes of the social event, so you act how you act and you don't care.
Yes, I agree with your definition of self-image as how you see yourself, and self-confidence as being confident in being able to handle situations. And I think that either can be good and the other low at the same time. Your self-image can include the distinction between being good at things you care about and leaving things aside that you don't care about... But I also think that your self-image can be that you do not need to be good even at all the things you care about. However, this is where trust in others is important (and hard). And I don't have all the answers. But at least making the distinction between self-image and self-confidence is the first step in making sure that your self-image does not get completely tied up in your self-confidence...

I think I've just tied in performance/outcomes and my perception of them to how I feel about myself again. But, personally, it's hard for me not to do that.
I think we all do, but it's worth trying to break free from... :mellow:
 
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my thoughts on confidence are that:

if you fake confidence, people *think* you are confident and ascribe power and responsibility to you. you then have an elated status through power and responsibility - which in turn makes you more (and real) confident.

so fake confidence. then achieve real confidence.

its worked in my life.
 
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